Uber is worth $51 billion after raking in almost $1 billion in its latest investment round. That means the young technology company is worth more than General Motors. According to the Wall Street Journal, investors in Uber’s latest round of financing include Microsoft and an Indian media conglomerate.
While there are plenty of publcilly-traded companies worth more than $50 billion, Uber becomes only the second private venture-backed company to hit a $50 billion valuation. The other is Facebook, which took seven years to hit the mark.
To put Uber’s new valuation in context, General Motors is worth $50 billion and Ford Motor Company is worth $59 billion. United Continental Holdings, Inc., the parent company of Unite Airlines and Continental Airlines, is worth less than half of Uber at just $21 billion.
Uber is a key player in the ‘sharing economy,’ enabling people around the world to hail rides using the company’s iPhone and Android apps. Founded just five years ago in San Francisco, Uber originally offered to connect users with drivers that owned luxury sedans, including Lincoln Town Cars, in well-heeled locales. The company now attracts a broader customer base thanks to Uber X, a service that offers rides in more pedestrian vehicles. It’s even dipping down to public transit territory with Uber POOL, which allows strangers heading to similar destinations to split fares.
Unlike traditional taxis and transportation companies, Uber does not own or operate any vehicles itself. Instead, its contract drivers must provide their own vehicles while Uber powers the technology, promotion and payment processes. User’s been accused of flouting the law in many locales and is under constant attack by Taxi companies and driver unions. While Uber customers can find rides just about anywhere, there are notable exceptions where the service has been held at bay, including Las Vegas.
Uber is reportedly still looking for further investments as it expands aggressively in global markets, including India and China.